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Science Rocks!

Film Canister Rocket


your results

Sent in by:
Meghan and Lee of College Station, AR

More fizzy fun with our old sparring partners, baking soda and vinegar.

Materials Needed

  • empty film canister
  • construction paper
  • tape
  • scissors
  • baking soda
  • vinegar



  1. When you do this, make sure you do it outside.
  2. Roll a piece of construction paper around the film canister so that you have a long tube.
  3. Make sure that the cover of the film canister is the bottom end of the tube. Tape the construction paper in place.
  4. Make a nose cone by cutting a circle out of construction paper.
  5. Cut a line to the middle of the circle - the radius - and twist the paper into a cone shape.
  6. Tape the ends together and tape it on top of the construction paper tube.
  7. You may want to put some fins on the end opposite the nose cone. These can stabilize the rocket.
  8. Take off the cover of the film canister. Put a small amount of baking soda (we'll let you figure how much works best) in the film canister and some vinegar (we'll let you figure how much works best) and cover quickly.
  9. Set the rocket down so that the nose cone points up.
  10. Stand back and get ready for blast-off!!

Some of your Results

Megan, age 10 of Thousand Oaks, CA wrote:
I used this experiment for the science fair. I tried a film canister, but the reaction happened too quickly before I got the lid on. So I used a Mentos Chewing Gum container. It went so high it hit the ceiling, so we did it outside. It went 71/2 feet high!!!

Mohammad, age 10 of Golden, CO wrote:
When I had set it, it rocketed up to at least 25 ft! I put half-canister vinegar, an a lot of baking soda.

Aisha, age 9 of Golden, CO wrote:
The canister flew up for a good 25ft or so, then crashed back down, I filled it more than halfway with vinegar, and plenty of baking soda

Chelle Mae of Baton Rouge, LA wrote:
When the rocket went up it, went 15 ft how the first time, then 21 the second time. I can say that this was an remarkable experiment, me and my friends did at school in Louisiana.

Mitchell, age 10 of Milwaukee, WI wrote:
i had to build it for my science project and when I was done building it I stood back and it few 1000-2004 feet high that was so cool!!!

Javier, age 14 of Weslaco, TX wrote:
My rocket went up 15 feet It was awesome!!!

Kennedy & Nayeli of Marietta, GA wrote:
when we did it, it went really high I in the air but we did it in our class room me and my partner for the science fair

Stephen, age 13 of Liberty Hill, TX wrote:
instead of a film canister, I used a plastic soda bottle. It went way up in the air probably 1200 ft.

Chase, age 7 of Shongaloo wrote:
I changed it up a bit. I did not have costruction paper so I used printer paper.

Katie, age 13 of Poughquag, NY wrote:
Messy, went off in my hand. Then I put the bicarbonate into an empty paper sugar pack. 1 TB vinegar in canister, drop in the packet, shake & set down. About 10 seconds canister popped up higher than the garage roof. About 25 feet!

Shontiera, age 12 of New Orleans, LA wrote:
It flew 100 ft. in the air.

Joe, age 14 of New York, NY wrote:
it did not do any thing but the cap pop off

Paul of Akron, OH wrote:
I found that using a semitransparent film canister with a push-in top works best. Fill half full with water and add 1/4 to 1/2 Alka-Seltzer tablet and the top shoots 20 feet in the air.

Amber, age 13 of Detroit wrote:
It was awesome. It flew really fast after a few times.

Dave, age 11 of Manistee, MI wrote:
the lid flew off and the rocket launched!

Janet of Sebastopol, CA wrote:
I read that if you make a paste of the baking soda with water, you can pack it into the lid "bowl". Then, pour the vinegar half way up inside the film can. Place the lid on carefully and push down gently to seal it. Shake and set it down. This gives you the time needed to step away. I have used this method with my classes and it works much easier than trying to get the lid on after the substances have mixed!

Carley, age 12 of Forney, TX wrote:
i used this as my science project it took forever to get the rocket to go but when it did man it flew high it also helped to read what other people said and it came out with great!

Travis of Buckeye, AZ wrote:
it went up about 1000 feet in the air because I used alot of vinagar and bakingsoda it was amazing!!!

Kareesha, age 14 of Melvindale, MI wrote:
it went far up in the air and alot of smoke came out of it. It was scary!!

Alex, age 14 of Oklahoma City, OK wrote:
its was so cool it went 17. 9ft this is so cool!

Amanda, age 10 of Loyal, WI wrote:
It took a long time to get good results with baking soda and vinegar because I did not know how much to mix. Then I also tried it with a different fuel. I used an effervescent cold tablet that my mom bought and water. Just stick in the tablet (I even tried it with a fourth of a tablet and it went about 6 feet high), then dump in a little bit of water and quickly stick the lid back on and set it down. The cold tablet was easier and it was awesome to watch!

Myranda, age 11 of Springfield, MO wrote:
When I did the film Canaster rocket it was so awsome that my mom and dad was so happy that I knew science and thank you for the idea.

Stephan, age 16 of Bronx, NY wrote:
I tried it with alcaseltzer and water it didnt go that high but when I use vinager alcaseltzer and baking soda it flew into the air.

Dylan, age 11 of Orange, CA wrote:
11 feet usd the same amount.

Cody, age 11 of Orange, CA wrote:
My flight was about 23 -24 feet. To me it worked better with less bakeing soda and a little more vinegar.

Jorge wrote:
My rocket went 6 ft.

Alexander, age 11 of Orange, CA wrote:
My rocket went 11. ft high.

Stephen, age 12 of Orange County, CA wrote:
It flew 9 feet.

Nathaniel, age 11 of Orange, CA wrote:
It went three feet. I used more bakimg soda.

Emily, age 11 of Fairfax, VA wrote:
When I did this experiment it shot up like 50 feet in the air! And then it came crashing down.

not yet implemented